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Johnson urged to recall Parliament as suspension is ruled unlawful

Bill Smith, DPA on

Published in News & Features

LONDON -- Opposition lawmakers urged British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to recall Parliament on Wednesday after Scotland's highest court ruled that his suspension of the legislature is unlawful.

Parliament was suspended early Tuesday after Johnson said he wanted to submit his government program in a new parliamentary session.

But critics accused him of trying to use prorogation, or suspension, to limit scrutiny ahead of his promised deadline for Britain to leave the European Union, with or without an exit deal, on Oct. 31.

"No one in their right mind believed Boris Johnson's reason for shutting down parliament," tweeted Keir Starmer, the opposition Labour Party's Brexit spokesman.

"I urge the prime minister to immediately recall parliament so we can debate this judgement and decide what happens next," Starmer wrote.

Johnson ignored the controversy later Wednesday while answering written questions from the public, in what Downing Street called a live "People's prime minister's questions" video-streamed via Twitter and Facebook.


Johnson defended his suspension of Parliament but did not comment on the Scottish court ruling or on the calls for him to recall Parliament.

"Parliament has so far failed to implement the people's will," he said after reading a question that asked if his government was anti-democratic and authoritarian.

He was referring to the 2016 Brexit referendum, in which 52% voted to leave the European Union.

Johnson again insisted that the suspension of Parliament would allow him to "push on" with his program for improvements to health services, policing and other "people's priorities."


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